If you want to create a sustainable business model and make money with less time and resources, the below formula is something you must know as a founder.
I am writing this because 99 out of 100 times, founders with new startups are not clear and focused enough on their market entry strategy, which results in wasting time, money, and many times they close down their business. Often times, I even see people with marketing and sales backgrounds make the same mistake.
我会与你分享市场切入的基本公式。这一公式是集硅谷的精益创业、麻省理工斯隆商学院的创业计划、彼得·泰尔的 “0到1” 创业法为一体的结晶。我也利用了我自身以及许多其他在中国拥有超过10年经验的连续创始人的经验，润色了这一公式。
I will share the basic formula with you below. This formula is a combination of Silicon Valley’s Lean startup, MIT’s Sloan business school’s entrepreneurship program, Peter Thiel’s “0 to 1”, combined with my own experience along with many other serial founders who have over 10 years of experience as a founder in China.
The below formula is applicable to just about any industry, era, and culture - and the more innovative your solution, the more applicable this formula becomes. However, please note that this formula is specifically used for market ENTRY. Here “market entry” is defined as the first market segment your startup company will dominate. Sometimes this first market entry point is called “beachhead market”.
Usually, the founding team will need to explore several market segments before validating and deciding on the first market segment to dominate. By knowing the below formula, you will be able to iterate with purpose and use less time and resources to find your best market entry point. A good market entry point is a market segment where:
- 你可以使用自己最厉害的技能：为了占领细分市场，你必须能够熟练运用自己最厉害的技能。这不仅仅可以助力你为客户创造更好的产品，而且还可以让你保留精力做创始人需要完成的其他事情。另外，当看到你在运用自己最熟练的技能，你的团队信心也将大涨，促使他们的效率更上一层楼。 You can use your best skills: In order to dominate any market segment, you must be able to apply your best skills. This will not only allow you to create a better product for your customers, but also you will have more energy left over for all the other things you need to do as a founder, and also you will also inspire confidence which will enable your team to perform at a much higher level.
- 你觉得自己在做有意义的事情：占领细分市场需要做很多工作，如果你认为自己在做对客户和社会有意义的事情，那么你将有更多的精力去创造更好的产品。吸引合适的人才来帮助你进行有意义的工作也将变得更容易！ You feel that you are doing something meaningful: Dominating a market segment is a lot of work, if you believe that you are doing something meaningful for your customers and society, you will have much more energy to create a better product and more easily attract the right talent to help you in your meaningful endeavor!
- 你很愿意长期为客户提供服务：问问自己，你能否在为客户提供服务的同时做自己喜欢做的事情，坚持自己的原则和诚信？如果你的回答是肯定的，那么你将比竞争对手拥有多得多的优势！ You are happy servicing customers for the long run: Ask yourself, are you able to do what you love, uphold your principles and integrity while servicing your customers? If you answer “yes” then you have a huge advantage over your competitors!
- 你的客户具有相同的购买习惯：如果你的客户具有相同的购买习惯，他们很可能也需要相同的价值。这意味着你只需要构建并优化产品的一个功能即可满足你的客户。这样，你只需要构建一种产品——你将最大程度地减少产品开发的时间和成本，同时为目标客户创建更好的产品。 Your customers have the same buying habits: If you customers have the same buying habits, it is a strong indicator that they need the same kind of value, which means you can just build one kind of product with functionality that is optimized to satisfy your customers. By building just one kind of product you will be able to minimize your product development time and costs and at the same time create a better product for your target customers.
- 你和你的团队可以创建相较于现有最佳解决方案/竞争者而言具有更高价值的解决方案/产品：扪心自问，你正在创建的解决方案/产品比客户已经在使用的解决方案/产品更好吗？ You and your team can create a solution/product with superior value relative to the best existing solution/competitor: Ask yourself, are you creating a solution/product that is clearly better than what your customers are already using?
- 你可以使用相同的营销计划来创收：很多创业者都掉入了一个坑——营销时针对了过多细分市场。他们根据多个细分市场创建了多个营销计划，浪费了大量的时间和资源。专注于一个细分市场要有效得多，为此你只需要设计一个营销方案即可。这样，你可以节省制定营销计划的时间，从而可以将更多的时间放在销售、创收和设计客户喜欢的产品上。 You can use the same marketing and sales plan to generate revenue: Don’t fall into the trap of targeting multiple market segments. Creating several different marketing plans drains your time and resources. It is far more effective to focus on one market segment so that you need only create one marketing message. This way you save time on your marketing planning so that you can spend more time on sales, revenue generation, and making a product your customers will love.
- 你的客户是关系紧密的，这样他们会自动进行口碑宣传：找到客户互相认识的细分市场，以便他们在使用你的产品后能够更快地传播信息。千万记住不要向无法怀互相交流的客户销售！ Your customers are connected so they are able to do word of mouth advertising: Find a market segment where your customers are connected with each other so they can spread the word faster after they use your product. Don’t fall into the trap of selling to customers that are not able to communicate with each other.
- 这一细分市场足够小，因此能快速占领主导地位：当你找到一个足够小的细分市场，你可以在其中产生相当可观的影响并快速占领它。不要试图在最大的市场中找商机。务实一点，成功征服一个小市场要比在占领大市场上栽跟头要好得多。 It is small enough to dominate: Find a market segment that is small enough where you have influence and can take down quickly. Don’t fall into the trap of going after the biggest market. Be practical and consider that successfully conquering a smaller market is better than failing at taking a larger market.
- 这一细分市场足够大，大到足以使你获利：盈利是从创业之初就应该形成的重要习惯。你赚到的钱将有助于帮助公司扩张，而且从一开始就有现金流的话能够很好地吸引投资者。因此，要在学会占领一个足够小的市场和在一个足够大的市场赚取利润之间找到平衡。 It is big enough to make a profit: The market should be big enough so that you can make a profit. Making a profit is an important habit to form from the beginning of your startup. The money you make will help fund expansion and also showing profit from the beginning helps attract investors. The trick is to find a balance between a small enough market to dominate and big enough market to make a profit.
- 在这一细分市场内，你的客户会更快买单/更加需要你的解决方案。 Your customers buy faster / need your solution more.
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At the same time, we understand that It may take a lot of work and practice to achieve the above points and find your best market entry point. This is why we have developed classes, tools, mentorship, and community to help you find your best market entry point. If you have any ideas or are facing marketing challenges, we invite you to leave a message below or contact us directly. If you leave us a message, then you will have the opportunity to become part of our curated online early stage startup community!